Several provinces and cities across the country have temporarily closed tourist sites to prevent the spread of the acute respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).
Foreign tourists make medical declarations in Hoa Lu district, the northern province of Ninh Binh
The northern province of Thai Binh on March 16 decided to close five relic sites, including Dong Bang Temple, A Sao Temple, Keo Pagoda, Tran Temple and Tien La Temple. All are famous sites in the province which attract a large number of tourists.
By 9:00 on March 16, Thai Binh had 62 people suspected of having the virus. They are under quarantine and in a stable condition, according to the provincial Department of Health.
Meanwhile, Director of the Department of Tourism of the south central province of Binh Dinh Nguyen Van Dung said on March 16 evening that the provincial People’s Committee had sent an urgent letter to organisations in the province, calling on them to stop admitting tourists to major attractions.
The suspension started on March 17 until the province receives new orders.
Binh Dinh has so far recorded no COVID-19 patients.
The southern province of Kien Giang stopped receiving international tourists and domestic tourists from areas with the pandemic from 7am on March 17.
Restaurants and shops must implement preventive measures.
The province has one COVID-19 patient, who was the 54th patient in Vietnam. The Latvian patient came to Phu Quoc Island and is now under treatment at the HCM City Hospital for Tropical Diseases.
All people in contact with the patients have been quarantined.
Khanh Hoa, Quang Binh temporarily halt tourism activities
The provinces of Khanh Hoa and Quang Binh have moved to temporarily halt activities welcoming visitors to tourist attractions in an attempt to protect the health and safety of both local residents and tourists amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) fears.
Ponagar Tower in Khanh Hoa provinceThe move comes following the Khanh Hoa provincial Department of Culture and Sports requesting that as of March 19, all activities to welcome guests to relic sites, including notable sites such as Ponagar Tower, Hon Chong, and Am Chua, will be stopped.
In addition, the Monuments Conservation Centre has requested that provinces and cities nationwide do not press ahead with plans to organise worship rituals involving the offering of incense at Ponagar Tower and the Am Chua relic site, whilst all guests to these places are now required to wear face masks during their visit.
Amid an increasingly complicated situation regarding COVID-19 epidemic, the central province of Quang Binh has also temporarily halted travelers visiting tourist sites.
During the suspension period, each of the tourist sites will undertake a range of drastic preventive measures aimed at combating the potential spread of the epidemic.
According to Nguyen Duc Cuong, Director of the Quang Binh Department of Health, local authorities have applied mandatory actions to intensify surveillance over the disease in line with the procedures regulated by the health sector.
So far, the province has yet to record any cases of the COVID-19 infection.
Lai Châu Province closes two tourist attractions
Ô Quy Hồ Mountain Pass viewed from Rồng Mây Glass Bridge. The two ecotourism sites have been closed as part of efforts to prevent the spread of contagious Covid-19 epidemic within Lai Châu Province. Photo thethaovanhoa.vn
Two famous tourist attractions in Tam Đường District in the northern province of Lai Châu – Ô Quy Hồ Mountain Pass and Rồng Mây Glass Bridge ecological tourism sites – have been closed as part of efforts to prevent the spread of the novel caronavirus, or Covid-19, epidemic within the province.
According to local authorities, during their closure, the managers of these two sites will assign on-duty staff to carry out maintenance work.
Nguyễn Văn Huân, the chairman of the Board of Directors of Hoàng Liên Sơn Group Joint Stock Company and also the investor of the Rồng Mây Glass Bridge Resort, revealed that the site used to receive 500 to 700 tourists on average per day before the outbreak of Covid-19.
“To ensure the operation of the resort, the company has signed contracts with 120 employees. However, since the appearance of the disease in the country, particularly after the occurrence of two cases in nearby Lào Cai Province, the number of tourists to the site has dropped significantly, causing severe financial loss to the company,” he said.
After two staff cuts, the resort now has only ten employees on duty to maintain the site. Based on the actual situation of visitors and disease control, the tourism site will be re-opened at an appropriate time.
“Though local tourists’ sites have temporarily stopped receiving tourists, the prevention of Covid-19 epidemic in the district still faces many difficulties,” said Nguyễn Trí Công, deputy head of the culture authority of Tam Đường District.
“Many foreign tourists entering the district by personal vehicles like motorcycles or bikes without notification of their presence to the local authority, which causes obstacles to inspection, control and information collection,” he added.
As revealed by the Provincial Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, up to March 17, there were 57 suspected cases within Lai Châu Province, all of whom have received negative test results for Covid-19.
According to Trần Mạnh Hùng, the deputy director of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Lai Châu Province, the number of tourists to the province have decreased significantly compared to the period before the epidemic outbreak.
However, the local authority’s point of view is to prioritise disease prevention and ensuring safety for tourists and locals, he said./.VNA/VNS/VNN
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